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US Cites ‘Negative Effect’ on Arms Sales as Reason to Support Saudi Arabia in Yemen

photo of US air force missiles
The U.S. is continuing to support Saudi Arabia in Yemen, and new evidence suggests their motivation may be based on dollars. Image via Pixabay.

Is the US continuing their support for Saudi Arabia in the Yemen War solely so that they can continue to sell them weapons?

Leaked documents reveal Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s decision to certify continued support of Saudi Arabia in the Yemen War came after emails warned him cutting off of support would negatively affect U.S. arms sales.

The Wall Street Journal broke the story on Thursday citing a classified memo and sources close to the decision.

Failure to Certify Will Negatively Affect Arms Sales

According to the Journal, most senior officials at the State Department urged Pompeo to reject certification “due to a lack of progress on mitigating civilian casualties.”  They argued certification would “provide no incentive for Saudi leadership to take our diplomatic messaging seriously” and “damage the Department’s credibility with Congress.”

However, a memo from the State Department’s Bureau of Legislative Affairs said, according to the Wall Street Journal, that “lack of certification will negatively impact pending arms transfers” and that “failure to certify may also negatively impact future foreign military sales and direct commercial sales to the region.”

Pompeo certified last week that Saudi Arabia and Abu Dhabi were reportedly doing everything they could to avoid civilian casualties and agreed to continue providing assistance to the Saudi-led coalition fighting Houthi rebels in Yemen.  Defense Secretary Jim Mattis also backed Pompeo’s decision.

The certification means the U.S. will continue to aid the coalition by selling them arms, refueling jets and identify Houthi targets to strike.

Pompeo said the governments of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates are “undertaking demonstrable actions to reduce the risk of harm to civilians.”

A State Department official declined to comment on the leaked documents but said the U.S. government was continuing to pressure their allies to improve humanitarian measures.

“While our Saudi and Emirati partners are making progress on these fronts, we are continuing discussions with them on additional steps they can take to address the humanitarian situation, advance the political track in cooperation with the UN Special Envoy’s efforts, and ensure that their military campaign complies with the law of armed conflict and international humanitarian law,” the official said in a statement.

Yemeni Civilians Caught in the Crosshairs

Meanwhile, the United Nations has said the Saudi coalition was responsible for most of the 16,700 civilians killed or injured in the Yemen War over the last three years. On Friday, the U.N. released a statement calling for all parties in Yemen to halt military action as the humanitarian situation in Yemen was rapidly deteriorating.

“It is far from clear that the recent intensification of fighting is producing any winners,” Mark Lowcock, the UN Emergency Relief Coordinator, told the Security Council on Friday.

“It is, though, abundantly clear, all too abundantly clear, who the losers are: millions of Yemenis civilians, most of them women and children, whose lives are right on the line.”

 

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Lauren von Bernuth

Lauren is one of the co-founders of Citizen Truth. She graduated with a degree in Political Economy from Tulane University. She spent the following years backpacking around the world and starting a green business in the health and wellness industry. She found her way back to politics and discovered a passion for journalism dedicated to finding the truth.

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6 Comments

  1. Patricia Gulifield Segal September 22, 2018

    There is no reason to support Arabia nor provide weapons. RLS

    Reply
  2. Kurt Bogle September 22, 2018

    As long as Wall street runs the so called “FREE WORLD,” ATROCITIES WILL BLOSOM EVERY WHERE. INVESTMENT BANKERS ONLY CARE ABOUT PROFIT, NOT HUMAN LIFE. CAPITALISM IS AFTER ALL ABOUT PLUNDERING AND GENOCIDE. READ THE OLD TESTAMENT, THEN YOU WILL UNDERSTAND WHY THE JEWS ARE HATED, AND THE ROMANS HAVE BEEN IN HIDING SO LONG.
    THE TORAH ISN’T A HOLEY BOOK. ITS A TERRORIST PROPAGANDA PAMPLET.
    “OUR GOD DOESN’T LIKE YOU!” THERE FOR YOU MUST DIE, AND WE MUST TAKE ALL YOUR STUFF!

    Reply
  3. Stu Brann September 22, 2018

    Of course they are; capitalists thrive on strife and warfare, they grow and grow and buy governments and buy governments.

    Reply
  4. Peter Lloyd September 22, 2018

    United States will solve their problems, let the Mideast solve theirs!

    Reply
  5. Shirley Hawkins September 23, 2018

    Our government is distroy American history.

    Reply
  6. Chris Tanner September 28, 2018

    The whole country is losing their shit over who showed their dick to who or whatever, yet shit like this nobody cares and wont ever change…. this is what the world is

    Reply

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